San Bernardino district attorney wants government to collect immigrants' DNA as part of reform deal

by jeeg 30. January 2013 22:47

San Bernardino District Attorney, Michael A. Ramos, drafted a hand-delivered a letter to Speaker of the House John Boehner and the Senate majority leader Senator Harry Reid asking for DNA collection to be added to a proposed immigration reform package.


"With this request, I tepidly put my toe in the water of the complex issues related to immigration reform. As a second generation Latino and law enforcement professional, I have a keen interest in immigration reform legislation that may advance in the 113th Congress," Ramos said in the letter.

"My interest in immigration reform stems from my experience as a prosecutor and victims' rights advocate," Ramos added.

On Monday, President Barack Obama said in a speech to the nation that he's in favor of reform. While praising immigrants' roles in establishing large companies like Google or Intel, Obama also boasted of his administration's role in deporting illegal-immigrant criminals and called for increased border security and "cracking down" on businesses who hire undocumented immigrants.

The DNA Act of 1994 authorized the FBI to establish, maintain, and manage the Combined DNA Index System (CODIS).

The computer system stores DNA profiles created by federal, state, and local crime laboratories throughout the United States. According to the FBI, since its 1998 operational inception, CODIS has accumulated over 10 million offender profiles, with almost 200,000 DNA hits assisting in 190,000 investigations as of December 2012.

Ramos, the first Latino to be elected to the seat of the District Attorney in the history of San Bernardino County, has strong views on the way immigration is handled in the U.S. from a law enforcement perspective.

"I think that our nation needs to do something about the whole immigration reform," Ramos said in a phone interview. "I'm a second generation Latino. My dad served in the Marine Corps. My grandparents came here from Mexico and became citizens legally."

Doug Saunders. Press Telegram


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